Situation in hospitals worse now than at beginning of pandemic, expert warns

2 January 2021, 13:01

By Seán Hickey

This expert in emergency treatment told Matt Frei he is more worried about coronavirus now than he was last Spring.

Adrian Boyle is the Vice President of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine and told LBC of the dire situation awaiting the UK's health services in 2021.

Matt asked about the Nightingale hospitals, wondering why they haven't been utilised to their full effect.

"The thing about the nightingale hospitals and their limitations is that you need the staff to run it." Mr Boyle said, adding that without staff, "it's useless."

Matt pointed out that the Government vowed to provide extra nursing and medical staff to battle the pandemic and wondered if Mr Boyle has found this.

The VP of the RCEM insisted that "even if here is an increase, a lot of that will be wiped out," because hospital staff are dropping out of the line of duty with illness quicker than they can be replaced.

Read More: Covid-19 crisis in numbers: LBC brings you the stats you need to know

The RCEM VP warned that the current situation is worse than in Spring 2021
The RCEM VP warned that the current situation is worse than in Spring 2021. Picture: PA

Matt asked Mr Boyle how worried he was for the coming months and his answer was harrowing.

Read More: Hospital services sacrificed to allow for Covid capacity, caller reveals

"The next few months I'm less worried about. What I'm really worried about are the next couple of weeks.

"We've got a combination of Christmas, the high wave and the vaccine programme," he answered, adding that while services are managing at the moment, we are nowhere near seeing the peak of cases from the holidays.

"Is this week that we're living through right now as bad as we saw back in March and April," Matt wondered.

"There are some aspects of this which are worse." Mr Boyle insisted.

"We've got a much more infectious and spreadable variant and we've gone into it with fuller hospitals."

He added that "the lockdown that we're using isn't nearly as effective as what we had before," concluding that he's "more worried now than I was back in the Spring."

Listen & subscribe: Global Player | Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify